Reading List Starred readings are mandatory. Optional readings are less critical, but it’s still a good idea to glance over them to get a sense of the questions, methodologies, and answers provided by each article.
You’re advised to do readings ahead of lectures in which the readings are referenced. If you’re not used to reading academic articles, this will seem a bit difficult at first. But it gets easier and the skill is key to developing fluency in whatever area of economics you end up working in. Focus on the big picture initially (i.e. skim articles at first, then delve deeper).
Introduction: The Role of Government *A. Sen. 1985. “The Moral Standing of the Market” Social Philosophy and Policy. 2(2), 1-19.
A. Sen. 1977. Rational Fools: A Critique of the Behavioral Foundations of Economic Theory. Philosophy and Public Affairs. 6(4), 317-344.
E. Khalil. 1999. Sentimental fools: a critique of Amartya Sen’s notion of commitment. Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization. 40(4), 373-386.
J. Ferris and S. Winer. (2007) “Just How Much Bigger is Government in Canada? A Comparative Analysis of the Size and Structure of the Public Sectors in Canada and the United States, 1929-2004.” Canadian Public Policy, 33(2), 1-34.
Public Goods P. Samuelson. 1954. The pure theory of public expenditure. The Review of Economics and Statistics 36(4):387-9.
*T. Bergstrom, L. Blume and H. Varian. 1986. On the private provision of public goods. Journal of Public Economics 29(1):25-49.
*D. Hungerman. 2005. Are church and state substitutes? Evidence from the 1996 welfare reform. Journal of Public Economics 89(11-12):2245-67.
D. Hungerman. 2009. Crowd-out and diversity. Journal of Public Economics 93(5-6):729-40.
J. Andreoni and A. Payne. 2003. Do government grants to private charities crowd out giving or fundraising?American Economic Review 93(3):792-812.
J. Andreoni and A. Payne. 2011. Is crowding out due entirely to fundraising? Evidence from a panel of charities. Journal of Public Economics 95(5-6):334-43.
M. Turcotte. 2012. Charitable Giving by Canadians. Canadian Social Trends. Statistics Canada Catalog No. 11-008-X
E.H. Clarke. 1971. Multipart pricing of public goods. Public Choice 2: 19-33.
T. Groves. 1973. Incentives in teams. Econometrica 41: 617-31.
J. Ledyard. 1994. Public Goods: A Survey of Experimental Research. California Institute of Technology Social Science Working Paper 861. X. Zhang and F. Zhu. 2010. Group Size and Incentives to Contribute: A Natural Experiment at Chinese Wikipedia. NET Institute Working Paper No. 07-22.
J. Falkinger, E. Fehr, S. Gachter, R. Winter-Ebmer. 2000. A Simple Mechanism for the Provision of Public Goods: Experimental Evidence. American Economic Review, 90(1), 247-264.
J. Andreoni. 1995. Cooperation in Public Goods Experiments: Kindness or Confusion? American Economic Review, 84(4), 891-904.
Empirical Methods in Public Economics *D.A. Freedman. 1991. Statistical Models and Shoe Leather. Sociological Methodology. 21, 291-313.
*J. Angrist and J. Pischke. 2010. The Credibility Revolution in Empirical Economics: How Better Research Design is Taking the Con out of Econometrics. Journal of Economic Perspectives, 24(2), 3-30.
D. Lee and T. Lemieux. 2009. Regression Discontinuity Designs in Economics. Working paper.
M. Bertrand, E. Duflo, S. Mullainathan. 2002. How Much Should We Trust Differences-in-Differences Estimates? NBER Working Paper no. 8841.
J. Bound, D. Jaeger, and R. Baker. 1995. Problems with Instrumental Variables Estimation when the Correlation Between Instruments and the Endogenous Variables is Weak. Journal of the American Statistical Association. 90, 443-50.
Externalities * J. Stiglitz. 2006. A new agenda for global warming. The Economists' Voice 3 (7). ISSN (Online) 1553-3832, DOI: 10.2202/1553-3832.1210
G.E. Rodriguez. 2009. Sequential Auctions with Multi-Unit Demands. The B.E. Journal of Theoretical Economics 9 (1): (Contributions), Article 45. DOI: 10.2202/1935-1704.1534
Ayres, I., and S. Levitt (1998) Measuring Positive Externalities from Unobservable Victim Precaution: An Empirical Analysis of Lojack. Quarterly Journal of Economics 113, 43-77.
Moretti, E. (2004) `Human Capital Externalities in Cities, in Handbook of Urban and Regional Economics, Henderson and Thisse (eds.)
Smith, V. and J. Huang. 1993. Hedonic models and air pollution: Twenty-five years and counting. Environmental and Resource Economics, 3(4), 381-394.
Schlenker, W. and W. Walker. 2011. Airports, Air Pollution, and Contemporaneous Health. NBER Working Paper #17684.
Insurance Markets, Moral Hazard, and Adverse Selection Akerlof, G. 1970. The Market for Lemons: Quality Uncertainty and the Market Mechanism. Quarterly Journal of Economics, 84(3), 488-500.
*M. Rothschild and J. Stiglitz. 1976. Equilibrium in competitive insurance markets: an essay on the economics of imperfect information The Quarterly Journal of Economics 90(4):629-649.
W. Jack. 2002. Equilibrium in competitive insurance markets with ex ante adverse selection and ex post moral hazard. Journal of Public Economics 84(2):251-78.
*R. Chetty and A. Finkelstein. 2012. Social insurance: connecting theory to data. NBER Working Paper #18433.
Card, D. and R. Chetty and Andrea Weber. Cash-on-hand and Competing Models of Intertemporal Behavior: New Evidence From the Labor Market. University of Mannheim Working Paper.
*Aron-Dine, A. and L. Einav and A. Finkelstein. 2013. The RAND Health Insurance Experiment, Three Decades Later. Journal of Economic Perspectives, 27(1), 197-222.
Browning, M. and T. Crossley, 2001. Unemployment insurance benefit levels and consumption changes. Journal of Public Economics, 80(1), 1-23.
Distortionary Taxes Harberger, A. 1962. The incidence of the corporation income tax. The Journal of Political Economy. 70(3), 215-240.
Gugl, E. 2009. Income splitting, specialization, and intra-family distribution. Canadian Journal of Economics, August 2009
(more to come)
Social Choice and Social Welfare Bergson, A. 1938. A Reformulation of Certain Aspects of Welfare Economics. Quarterly Journal of Economics 52 (2) 310-334.
Arrow, K. J. 1950. A Difficulty in the Concept of Social Welfare. Journal of Political Economy 58 (4) 328-346.
Atkinson, A.B. 1970. On the measurement of inequality, Journal of Economic Theory, 2 (3) 244-263.
* Jorgenson D. W. 1985. Efficiency Versus Equity in Economic Policy Analysis. American Economist 29 (1) 5-14.
Posner, R. 1979. Utilitarianism, Economics and Legal Theory. Journal of Legal Studies, 8(1), 103-140.
Optimal Taxation *Diamond, P. and E. Saez. 2011. The Case for a Progressive Tax: From Basic Research to Policy Recommendations. Journal of Economic Perspectives 25(4), 165-190.
Saez, E. and J. Slemrod, and S. Giertz. 2012. The Elasticity of Taxable Income with Respect to Marginal Tax Rates: A Critical Review. Journal of Economic Literature, 50(1): 3-50.
(more to come)
Poverty and Inequality Sen, A. 1976. Poverty: An Ordinal Approach to Measurement. Econometrica, 44(2), 219-231.
Bowlus, A. and J. Robin. 2011. An International Comparison of Lifetime Inequality: How Continental Europe Resembles North America. University of Western Ontario CIBC Working Paper 2011-6.
Hoynes, H., M. Page, and A. Stevens. 2006. Poverty in America: Trends and Explanations Journal of Economic Perspectives, Winter 2006, 20(1): 47-68.
*Fortin, N. and D. Green and T. Lemieux and K. Milligan and W. Riddell. 2012. Canadian Inequality: Recent Developments and Policy Options. Canadian Public Policy, 38(2), 121-145.
Redistributive Expenditure Programs Francois, P. and M. Vlassopoulos 2007. Pro-social Motivation and Delivery of Social Service. CESifo conference paper.